How can you feel at home when part of you feels like your home is on the other side of the world?
I am aware it has been a long time between posts and since I last wrote I have moved back to Perth, Australia. A lot has changed in my world back here and after 5 months I am still struggling to fit in. The first major change is a lot of my friends have become parents while I’ve been away. I am really happy for all of them, but it does at times, leave me feeling a bit inadequate. Our conversations have changed (naturally) but more than that, we are no longer on the same page about a lot of things. And how can we be?! Having a child changes your priorities massively and now all my conversational contributions seem trivial in comparison. Here’s me pondering my New Years Eve options for this year, while some of them would just be happy with a good night’s sleep! Don’t get me wrong, these aren’t bad things, and for those friends who might be reading please don’t be offended it’s just all new and different for me.
For the entire time I was away, in the back of my mind I would be thinking of home, Perth and all my friends and family here. Part of me was always excited at the prospect of coming home and being reunited with everyone and for life to go on as normal. How naive of me to think that just because I left the country, my whole world would be on pause, just waiting for me to come home so things could start again. It’s the realisation that actually a lot has changed, that’s completely thrown me. I find myself with a handful of good friends in Perth who have actually made the effort to see me, and whom make me glad to be back. While at the same time feeling like my best friends, my ‘crew’ if you will are on the other side of the world. I will miss London for the rest of my life, there is something about that city that just clicks with me, but the thing I miss the most are my people there.
So when I catch up with people and they ask, ‘are you glad to be back? Or are you missing it already?’ my first instinct is to say “I miss it so much, I’d be back on a plane tomorrow if I could be” but instead I am trying to focus on the positives. And there ARE a lot of positives.. aside from people..firstly, the air quality. Doesn’t sound like much I know, but when you’ve lived in a big city that has one of the world’s highest pollution levels, you notice the clean, almost sweet smelling and tasting air when you step off that plane. Secondly, the light. I never appreciated how lucky we are in Australia to have so much daylight. Something my body ached for when it was dark at 3:45pm in the dead of winter and you’re walking to and from work in the dark. Thirdly, the beach. It’s not officially summer here yet, in fact it’s barely been spring with the weather we have been having (British summer styles) but I have managed to get to the beach (and swim!) twice already! There really are no beaches like West Australian beaches. Soft white sand, clear waters.. they’re the best.
So I guess what I’m trying to say is, something they don’t tell you when you move away, is that coming home is a lot harder than leaving. I honestly thought after 5 months I would have some semblance of a normal life in place, but alas I don’t. I don’t have a full time job, a car, my own place.. and don’t even get me started on the Perth dating scene.. but I’m trying to STAY POSITIVE… as a good friend recently pointed out to me, ‘unfortunately things will have changed, but that doesn’t mean for the worse’. So my motto moving forward (perhaps an early new years resolution?) is EMBRACE THE CHANGE.. may as well, there’s no point chasing the past, what’s done is done, time to look ahead and make the future as exciting and interesting as possible!
Ps – I am going to try a lot harder to be more consistent with this blog I promise!
Pps – If you have gone through something similar to this, I’d love to hear from you!